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ConnX provides more time for research for Children’s Cancer Institute

Every year 950 Australian children and adolescents will be diagnosed with cancer, and each week three Australian children and adolescents will die of cancer. Children’s Cancer Institute exists to save the lives and eliminate the suffering of all children with cancer.

Children’s Cancer Institute was founded in 1976, Children’s Cancer Institute is the only independent medical research institute in Australia wholly dedicated to putting an end to childhood cancer. This important work is undertaken by around 200 employees, 30 students and 15 office volunteers.

It’s vital that Children’s Cancer Institute can keep its overheads low to be able to put as much money as possible into its research programs. Maximising workforce productivity is essential and Children’s Cancer Institute uses ConnX to help manage its workforce.

“The system is very robust and one of the better HRIS I have used”
Lindsay Kilgour, Human Resources and WHS Advisor, Children’s Cancer Institute

ConnX was installed in 2008 to track employee data, store payment advices and support the payroll function. The Human Resources team realised that the power of the system wasn’t being fully harnessed, and in 2015, a project team was established to increase efficiency using ConnX. The first task was to implement the ConnX Performance Module.

“Previously, we had been using stand-alone systems to manage performance, but these required a different organisational structure and offered no integration with human resources or payroll”, said Mr Kilgour. Staff members found the previous performance system cumbersome and unreliable, causing unnecessary work for staff and the Human Resources team.

Process review

Implementing ConnX Performance was the ideal time to review the entire performance management process and consider how it could be improved. The project team revised the existing performance form that had been very long and time consuming to complete. The team decided on a more streamlined and shorter form that focused on key performance indicators and comments rather than ratings.

“The performance form is now more interactive; it allows managers and staff extra time for review and discussion, rather than completing the form”
said Mr Kilgour.

The number of calls to Human Resources from staff and managers has reduced significantly because everyone is able to find the information they need within the ConnX system.

The time needed to complete the entire performance process has halved and employee satisfaction has increased significantly. The last two annual employee satisfaction surveys have revealed impressive 11% and 20% increases in satisfaction. “Our employees enjoy using ConnX and really like that they can see past reviews in the system. This provides a historical context for them and allows them to monitor their development”, said Mr Kilgour.

Electronic Forms

Children’s Cancer Institute has just rolled out a number of workflow-enabled electronic forms that will further automate many manual processes. The project team has been able to develop forms and create workflow rules to meet its needs. Many Human Resources processes have been streamlined, thereby allowing staff and managers to electronically request new team members and also employee changes and terminations.

These forms now go all the way to Payroll and integrate seamlessly. Other customised forms have been created to suit the needs of the Institute, including professional training and Visa sponsorship. New team member confirmations and transfer confirmation forms have also been created to effortlessly notify IT and Facilities so they can also keep on top of changes with ease.

The automation of these processes means that staff will not be tied up shuffling paper forms, which can so easily get lost or be entered incorrectly.

“Making HR administration processes simple, streamlined and efficient ensures that our researchers and team members have more time to focus on what we are here for, and that’s to find a cure for childhood cancer”
said Mr Kilgour.


Tracking volunteers

Children’s Cancer Institute also has a number of volunteers and students on placements. Previously Human Resources staff had to manually manage these employee records because the payroll system couldn’t accommodate unpaid workers. “Having all team members within the one database ensures that we have all the information we need at our fingertips”, said Mr Kilgour.

Visa tracking

Due to the on-going talent shortage within the research sector, the Children’s Cancer Institute needs to occasionally recruit researchers from overseas to fill vacancies. The visa tracking facility in ConnX ensures that no visas expire unknowingly because it automatically notifies the staff member and their manager. Human Resources can also run reports that list visa expiry dates.


The ConnX Reporting module is an essential tool for the Children’s Cancer Institute Human Resources team who are able to view metrics and people-related data across the system. “ConnX reporting opens up the system to management, enhancing visibility and driving informed decision making”, said Mr Kilgour


Implementing ConnX at the Children’s Cancer Institute means that the Human Resources team has been able to eliminate manual processes and find efficiencies.

“ConnX is one of the better HRIS systems in the market; it’s so efficient and customisable. You can make it as simple or complex as you need”
said Mr Kilgour.